Organised by CARE International for International Women’s Day, the March 4 Women was preceded with an event in The Scoop adjacent to City Hall – home to London’s Mayor. Lively ‘warm-up’ act Morning Gloryville had everybody on their feet as the audience grew, including a conga and culminated in a form of primal scream! Once seated the now-packed crowd listened intently to speeches from Helen Pankhurst (great-granddaughter of Emmeline), Bianca Jagger, Sadiq Khan and Annie Lennox, and enjoyed performances from Emeli Sande, and Beth Orton with Billy Bragg.
Radio 1 DJ Gemma Cairney also led interviews with a number of guests including young Syrian refugee and activist Muzoon Almellehan.
The finale to the event in The Scoop was an arrangement of Otis Redding’s ‘Respect’ by composer David Arnold and backed by ‘Bond’ and a choir, with singers Melanie C, VV Brown, Kate Nash, Preeya Kalidas and Natasha Bedingfield.
Everyone then gathered in front of City Hall for the march, which took a route across Tower Bridge to the Tower of London concourse – via a pretty violent rainstorm.